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CNN Student News Transcript: August 20, 2007

  • Story Highlights
  • Catch up on some of the big news stories from the summer of 2007
  • Find out how some U.S. officials are preparing for Hurricane Dean
  • Learn about relief efforts in Peru following a deadly earthquake
  • Next Article in Living »
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(CNN Student News) -- August 20, 2007

Quick Guide

Stories of Summer '07 - Catch up on some of the big news stories from the summer of 2007.

Hurricane Dean - Find out how some U.S. officials are preparing for Hurricane Dean.

Earthquake in Peru: Learn about relief efforts in Peru following a deadly earthquake.



CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: We're back with a brand new school year of CNN Student News. Glad to have you with us everyone. I'm Carl Azuz. Bracing for the storm: U.S. and Mexican authorities are preparing for a powerful hurricane tearing through the Caribbean and looks to be headed for the Gulf of Mexico. And wrapping up the summer: You might have been out of school, but the news doesn't take time off. So we're reviewing some of the summer's big stories

First Up: Stories of Summer '07

AZUZ: You might have spent the last couple months working at a summer job or working on your tan, but the news didn't stop when school let out last spring. There was tragedy in the Twin Cities when a bridge in Minnesota collapsed during rush hour, and questions in America's pasttime when a slugger's record-breaking trip around the bases raised a cloud of controversy. We've followed it all and we're ready to get you caught up on some of the biggest headlines of the summer.


RUSTY DORNIN, CNN REPORTER: It was an extended family of rescue workers from around the country who converged on Charleston to honor the nine fallen firemen, joining blood relatives, friends and the local community.

HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN REPORTER: The relatives of those victims deal with the wrenching but definite news that everybody on board the flight from Puerto Allegre died during yesterday's crash.

LIZ KENNEDY, CNN REPORTER: The questions for the CNN-sponsored debate were submitted to the online video sharing Web site YouTube.

BRIAN TODD, CNN REPORTER: Animal rights protesters target their rage at an NFL star as he enters a federal courthouse. Inside, Michael Vick pleads not guilty to felony charges of dogfighting and conspiracy.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN REPORTER: Six o'clock on Wednesday evening, rush hour in Minneapolis. Cars, trucks, buses crawl across the I-35W bridge bumper to bumper. Just minutes later, that slow traffic comes to a tragic halt.

JOHN VAUSE, CNN REPORTER: Many of the toys made here for the U.S. giant Mattel were coated in lead paint, and earlier this month more than a million were recalled.

BARRY BONDS: This record is not tainted at all, at all, period. You guys can say whatever you want.

JOHN LORINC, CNN REPORTER: Nearly a week into the search for six miners trapped in the Crandall Canyon coal mine, rescuers will now try a new tactic: drilling a third hole in an effort to find the men.

BARBARA STARR, CNN REPORTER: Top U.S. commanders are now using the strongest language to condemn the killing and wounding of hundreds after multiple suicide vehicle bombs exploded in remote northern Iraqi villages, home to a religious minority group known as Yazidis.

HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN REPORTER: People waited in lines for hours, desperate for food, water and blankets. Civil defense authorities estimate more than 17,000 homes were destroyed in one town alone.



AZUZ: If you want to keep the discussion going on the stories in our summer round-up, we've got a learning activity that will help you take a closer look. Students can talk about how time and perspective might shape opinions about news events and examine how the stories from this summer might be presented in a history textbook. You can check out the free activity at

Hurricane Dean

AZUZ: Several countries are preparing for a deadly storm that's blowing through the Caribbean. Hurricane Dean has been tearing across the area since late last week, and on Friday, it strengthened into a Category 4 hurricane. Jamaican officials turned off some power grids in advance of the storm's approach and advised residents to move into shelters, and the Mexican government issued a hurricane watch for areas in Dean's projected path. This massive storm is large enough to easily be seen from space, and with its menacing winds bearing down on the Gulf of Mexico, Liz Kennedy reports on what officials are doing to get ready.


LIZ KENNEDY, CNN REPORTER: FEMA officials came out Sunday with a message: If Hurricane Dean does make landfall on the American Gulf Coast, help is ready to go.

DAVID PAULISON, FEMA DIRECTOR: We are ready. This is one of the best efforts I've seen, the best coordinated efforts I've seen.

KENNEDY: FEMA says their latest information shows the storm not making it as far north as Texas. However, they say hurricanes are ultimately very unpredictable and they are working under the assumption the United States will be affected. The White House has already approved a request to free up federal assistance for Texas. On the Gulf of Mexico off the Texas coast Sunday, oil rig workers were evacuated via helicopter to nearby Galveston. A veteran of the rigs says he was happy to comply.

KEN YATES, OIL RIG WORKER: I know what its like to be on, get caught, trapped on one and you can't get off of it. Its not much fun.

KENNEDY: Dean is being blamed for several deaths in the Caribbean. Forecasters say it could bring up to 20 inches of rain in heavily populated Jamaica, which could trigger life-threatening floods. I'm Liz Kennedy, reporting from Atlanta.


Fast Facts

GEORGE RAMSAY, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Time for some Fast Facts! Using categories of 1 to 5, the Saffir-Simpson scale gauges how much power a hurricane packs. A Category 1 hurricane, for example, has wind speeds of at least 74 miles per hour and is capable of lightly damaging trees and shrubs. Contrast that to a seriously damaging Category 4, which has wind speeds of more than 130 miles per hour and a storm surge of up to 18 feet above normal.

Earthquake in Peru

AZUZ: As you saw in our summer wrap-up, parts of Peru are recovering from a different natural disaster. A massive earthquake struck there last week, killing more than 500 people. This tremor registered an 8.0 on the Richter scale, which measures the magnitude, or strength, of earthquakes. Towns along the country's Pacific Coast suffered the most severe damage, and many Peruvians were left in need of food, shelter and supplies. Harris Whitbeck has more on the relief efforts in the South American nation.


HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN REPORTER: Three days after the powerful earthquake, aid continued to flow into the stricken Ica region of southern Peru. A sports stadium in the regional capital hummed with activity as workers sorted supplies. Among the workers, Peruvian President Alan Garcia's daughter.

GABRIELA GARCIA (Spanish): We are trying not only to give support and all the solidarity that we have, but also to give our time to help in moving and classifying things.

WHITBECK: People waited in lines for hours, desperate for food, water and blankets. Civil defense authorities estimate more than 17,000 homes were destroyed in one town alone. Many of the area's residents spent the night in the streets for a third time in a row. They were surrounded by the destruction, accompanied by little more than what lay beneath the rubble

EARTHQUAKE VICTIM (Spanish): The dead are still buried under all this. It is going to start stinking here and we can be contaminated by cholera or many other epidemics.

WHITBECK: Military personnel patrolled the stricken cities in efforts to prevent looting. Gunfire was heard throughout the night in Ica. Eyewitnesses reported armed inmates who had escaped from a nearby destroyed prison were roaming parts of town looting homes. Amid the chaos, a sign of hope. A baby was born to an earthquake victim while the visiting President Alan Garcia looked on. But other parents worried about the future for their families.

EARTHQUAKE VICTIM (Spanish): I need to think about rebuilding so that my son can live here. I know it is too soon, but someday I will die and my children will live on.

WHITBECK: They might live on, but they will do so with the memories of the horror of the past. Harris Whitbeck, CNN, Lima, Peru.



AZUZ: CNN Student News has a new address, at least online. Check out You'll find all of our free curriculum materials, transcripts of all of our programs and of course our show. Plus, you won't want to miss our brand new blog. It's all right there at


RAMSAY: Time for the Shoutout! Fill in the blank: A pachyderm is a _____. If you think you know the answer, shout it out! Is it a: A) Reptile, B) Mammal, C) Bird or D) Arachnid? You've got three seconds -- GO! Elephants, hippos and rhinos are all pachyderms, and they're all warm-blooded mammals to boot. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!

Before We Go

AZUZ: Before we go, we've got a look at an elephant's trip over the hill. Siri the elephant turned the big 40 this weekend. The plodding pachyderm has been the main attraction in her zoo's elephant exhibit for 35 years. She may be a little long in the tusk, but that doesn't mean she doesn't know how to party! Plenty of fans were on hand to sing happy birthday and cheer her on as she dove trunk first into her peanut butter birthday cake. Siri's friends at the zoo say she's got quite the fan club.

NICK PIRRO, ONONDAGA COUNTY EXECUTIVE: She's the matriarch of the herd here, and we have one of the finest elephant breeding programs in the country. So we're very proud of it.



AZUZ: And that's our last bite for today. But we'll see you again tomorrow for more CNN Student News. Thanks for watching, everyone. I'm Carl Azuz. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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